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Ovechkin scores twice, 499th career goal lifts Caps to OT win

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Ovechkin scores twice, 499th career goal lifts Caps to OT win

NEW YORK - Post-game analysis of the Capitals’ wild 4-3 overtime win over the New York Rangers Saturday afternoon at Madison Square Garden:

How it happened: Nicklas Backstrom tied the score with 5.7 seconds remaining in regulation and Alex Ovechkin won it 1:25 into overtime with his second goal of the game, breezing past Rick Nash and muscling a shot through defenseman Ryan McDonagh and goalie Henrik Lundqvist to give the Caps their third straight win. Justin Williams also scored for the Caps in the second period. The Caps had a 2-0 lead heading into the third period. But the Rangers rallied with three goals on their first seven shots of the third period -- one each by Oscar Lindberg, Kevin Hayes and Viktor Stalberg. That led to Backstrom’s last seconds heroics

What it means: The Caps are now 22-0-1 after leading through two periods.  They have won three straight and improved their league-leading record to 31-7-3 for 65 points. It is the best first half they’ve had in their 42-year history and are on pace 130 points, nine more than their last Presidents’ Trophy season in 2009-10.

Ovi one away: Alex Ovechkin received a gift of a goal with 15 seconds remaining in the opening period when Dan Girardi’s pass intended for Dominic Moore landed on his stick for an easy put back, giving him 498 NHL goals in 800 NHL games. He made it 499 with a mad rush in overtime.

Schmidtuation: Just before Ovechkin’s goal, Derek Stepan had a chance to win it, but a combined stop by Braden Holtby and Nate Schmidt thwarted his rebound attempt.

Look ahead: The Caps are right back in action Sunday night when they return home to face the Ottawa Senators (6:30 p.m. pregame, CSN). They will follow with three days between games, leading up to Thursday’s home game against the Vancouver Canucks.

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Capitals Injury updates: Braden Holtby a possibility to start in Montreal

Capitals Injury updates: Braden Holtby a possibility to start in Montreal

The Capitals were able to pull out a win Friday in Colorado without Evgeny Kuznetsov, T.J. Oshie or Braden Holtby. With a game Monday in Montreal, the team hopes it will not be quite as shorthanded against the Canadiens.

Washington practiced Sunday in Montreal and three goalies took to the ice. Holtby was on the ice along with Pheonix Copley and Ilya Samsonov 

Holtby suffered an upper-body injury Wednesday morning prior to the game in Winnipeg. That injury kept him out of the lineup both Wednesday and Friday. The Caps netminder told Chris Kuc of The Atlantic that he is ready to play, but still needs to be cleared by doctors.

Head coach Todd Reirden said after practice that Holtby was a possibility to start Monday.

With Holtby’s status still up in the air, Samsonov remains with the team in case he is needed to suit up as a backup.

While Holtby was on the ice for practice, both Kuznetsov and Oshie were not. Reirden told the media that both players are day-to-day and are with the team in Montreal. Their status for Monday remains uncertain.

With no Kuznetsov or Oshie, Reirden kept the offensive lines largely the same from Friday except for switching Devante Smith-Pelly to the third line and moving Brett Connolly down to the fourth.

Alex Ovechkin – Lars Eller – Tom Wilson 
Jakub Vrana – Nicklas Backstrom – Andre Burakovsky
Chandler Stephenson – Travis Boyd – Devante Smith-Pelly
Dmitrij Jaskin – Nic Dowd – Brett Connolly

Reirden switched up the lines frequently on Friday and Stephenson, Boyd, Smith-Pelly combined for a goal in the second period.

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Capitals vs. Canadiens: Time, TV Channel, Live Stream, How to Watch

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Capitals vs. Canadiens: Time, TV Channel, Live Stream, How to Watch

When the Capitals traveled to Montreal to face the Canadiens earlier this month, they suffered one of their toughest losses of the season, allowing three goals in the final three-plus minutes of the third period, falling 6-4 in devastating fashion.

The Caps will be looking for revenge on Monday evening, as they get their first crack at the Canadiens since that devastating loss.

Alex Ovechkin enjoys playing against the Canadiens. In 47 games against Montreal in his career, Ovechkin has 51 points (29 goals and 22 assists), including a two-goal performance in their meeting earlier this season.

Here is everything you need to know about Capitals vs. Canadiens which takes place Monday at 7:30 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Washington.

CAPITALS at CANADIENS: HOW TO WATCH

What: Washington Capitals vs. Montreal Canadiens, Game 20 of the 2018-19 NHL Regular Season

Where: Bell Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

When: Monday, November 19, 7:30 p.m. ET

TV Channel: Capitals vs. Canadiens will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington. (NBC Sports Washington channel Finder)

Live Stream: You can watch the Capitals at the Canadiens on the new MyTeams by NBC Sports App.

Radio: Caps Radio 24/7, 106.7 The Fan, 1500 AM

CAPITALS at CANADIENS TV SCHEDULE

6:30 PM: Caps Overtime Live
7:00 PM: Caps Pregame Live
7:30 PM: Capitals at Montreal Canadiens
10:00 PM: Caps Postgame Live
10:30 PM: Caps Overtime Live

CAPITALS at CANADIENS PLAYERS TO WATCH

Max Domi, LW, Canadiens: In 20 games, Domi has recorded a point in all but three of them. His 24 points are tied for the ninth-most in the NHL.

Alex Ovechkin, LW, Capitals: Ovechkin loves playing against the Canadiens, as he has totaled 51 points in 47 career games against Montreal. In their first meeting this season, he netted two goals in the 6-4 loss.

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